The magical number 4

My post on working memory whittled 7±2 down to 5±2; turns out I should’ve settled on 4±1.



Edit: This post was prompted by Olivia Mitchell’s blog entry, which led me to Chris Atherton’s work. Credit where it’s due!


3 responses to “The magical number 4

  1. Nice to meet you (on Twitter). I’ve been thinking about the magical number too:

  2. finiteattentionspan

    Crazy, isn’t it? I don’t know how Miller got away with 7 for so long … experimentation quickly reveals that people usually get into trouble way before that.

    Hi, btw 🙂 Nice to meet you!

    (Also btw, completely understand your anonymity policy; I wrestled with this for a long time myself. What eventually tipped it for me was the usefulness of networking with my work hat on – and it has been frankly awesome in that regard – but I get that this approach doesn’t work for everyone, and yes, I have to self-censor. So, swings and roundabouts. It would delight me if your anonymity allowed you to write about the things I can’t say!)

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